Ever since the dawn of MTV and Friday Night Videos, the music video has significantly impacted musical tastes and pop culture. It might not be as extreme as when the Buggles declared that "Video Killed the Radio Star", but there is no arguing that the music video certainly could make or break a song's popularity. So this regular Flashback Video feature will serve to remember some of the music videos from the great '80s decade that made an impact on me in one way or another.
This issue we will cover "I Know There's Something Going On" by Frida. Princess Anni-Frid Synni Lyngstad Prinzessin Reuss von Plauen is better known as Frida, one of the members of the Swedish '70s super group ABBA. As part of ABBA, the band became one of the most commercially successful acts in the history of popular music selling over 375 million records and topping the charts worldwide from 1972 until 1983 when the band broke up. This was well before the Broadway musical Mamma Mia! debuted in 2000 and the 2008 film based on the musical which introduced them to a whole new generation. Frida went on to have some solo success of her own in the early '80s.
In 1982, during ABBA’s last year as a working band, Frida recorded and released her first post-Abba solo album which was also her first solo album in English. The Phil Collins-produced album was called Something’s Going On and became a big success for her worldwide. A much rockier sound was found on many of the songs and Phil Collins’ special drum sound contributed a lot, especially on the lead single. The album sold 1.5 million copies and spawned the successful single “I Know There’s Something Going On”, which topped the charts in four countries and reached the top five in many more. In the United States, the single reached a respectable #13 in March 1983 on the Billboard Hot 100, lasting an impressive seven months on the chart making it the 20th largest selling single that year. Many people do not realize that this '80s hit is sung by the same person who was a member of ABBA. The song was written by Russ Ballard, who was the lead singer of the band Argent, and it is about a woman who is convinced her man is cheating on her. I am convinced that the involvement (and Midas touch) of Phil Collins as producer, drummer and backing vocals really helped make this song the hit it became selling 3.5 million copies worldwide. The music video for "I Know There's Something Going On" was directed by Stuart Orme who had previously worked on several Genesis and Phil Collins videos including "Turn It On Again", "Misunderstanding", "I Missed Again", "In The Air Tonight" and "You Can't Hurry Love" among others. He would later direct Whitney Houston's "Saving All My Love For You" and Level 42's "Something About You" and "Lessons in Love". They filmed the video at several locations in London, England in early July 1982. It tells the story of Frida, who appears to already be in a struggling relationship, when she discovers through photos taken at a fashion shoot that her husband/boyfriend is seeing another woman. Here is the music video for “I Know There’s Something Going On” by Frida…
That was her first and only solo hit in the U.S. Frida wasn't only a "Dancing Queen", but she gained the Princess title in 1992 when she married a German prince of the former sovereign House of Reuss. Prince Heinrich Ruzzo Reuss of Plauen died in 1999. She currently lives in Switzerland. Don’t hold your breath for the long-demanded ABBA reunion. Frida has stated that she has no interest in ever returning to a music career. As a solo artist, you can add her to the long list of one-hit wonders from the '80s and that is never a bad thing.
Hope you enjoyed another trip back to the '80s thanks to Flashback Video!